Newsom, Joanna - In California Lyrics




My heart became a drunken runt
On the day I sunk in this shunt
To tap me clean of all the wonder
And the sorrow I have seen since I left my home

My home on the old Milk Lake
Where the darkness does fall so fast, it feels like some kind of mistake
Just like they told you it would
Just like the Tulgey Wood

When I came into my land
I did not understand
Neither dry rot or the burn pile
Or the bark-beetle or the dry well
Or the black bear

But there is another who is a little older
When I broke my bone, he carried me up from the riverside
To spend my life in spitting distance of the love that I have known
I must stay here, in an endless eventide

And if you come and see me, you will upset the order
You cannot come and see me, for I set myself apart
But when you come and see me in California
You cross the border of my heart

Well, I have sown untidy furrows across my soul, but I am still a coward
Content to see my garden grow so sweet and full of someone else's flowers
Sometimes, I can almost feel the power
Sometimes I am so in love with you
Like a little clock that trembles on the edge of the hour
Only ever calling out, "Cuckoo"

When I called you, you little one
In a bad way, did you love me? Do you spite me?
Time will tell if I can be well
And rise to meet you rightly

While moving across my land
Brandishing themselves like a burning branch
Advance the tallow-colored walleyed deer
Quiet as gondoliers

While I wait all night, for you in California
Watching the fox pick off my goldfish from their sorry golden state
And I am no longer afraid of anything
Save the life that here awaits

I don't belong to anyone, my heart is heavy as an oil drum
And I don't want to be alone, my heart is yellow as an ear of corn
And I have torn my soul apart from pulling artlessly with fool commands
Some nights, I just never go to sleep at all and I stand

Shaking in my doorway like a sentinel, all alone
Bracing like the bow upon a ship and fully abandoning
Any thought of anywhere but home, my home
Sometimes I can almost feel the power
And I do love you
Is it only timing that has made it such a dark hour?
Only ever chiming out, "Cuckoo"?

My heart, I wear you down, I know
Gotta think straight, keep a clean plate
Keep from wearing down
If I lose my head, just where am I going to lay it?

For it has half-ruined me to be hanging around
Here, among the daphne blooming out of the big brown
I am native to it, but I'm overgrown
I have choked my roots on the earth, as rich as roe
Here, down in California





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Newsom, Joanna In California Comments
  1. Caris Not Charis

    She sounds a little bit like Kate Bush 💛🌻

  2. Arthur Newman

    makes me feel like a child again

  3. heelys005

    "Sometimes I'm so in love with you." ..it's amazing part!

  4. Lucas

    To spend my life in spitting distance of the love that I have known, I must stay here in an endless eventide.

  5. Brian Siallagan

    Rio Ferdinand vlog brought me this far

  6. Onche518

    Joanna Newsom is the best female musician of our generation
    Fucking shit there are moments in this song alone that make me want to scream outside in the middle of the night

  7. Christian K.

    You know shes famous, just unheard. Wild one?!

  8. muined

    i listened to "does not suffice" before i listened to the whole album straight through, so when i did, er, that, and came to this song, my jaw dropped

  9. chema

    This song is my favourite song ever right now

  10. June Asiimwe

    One of her most stunning songs.

  11. Edwin David Hernández González

    My heart became a drunken runt
    On the day I sunk in this shunt
    To tap me clean
    Of all the wonder
    And the sorrow I have seen
    Since I left my home:

    My home, on the old Milk Lake
    Where the darkness does fall so fast
    It feels like some kind of mistake
    (Just like they told you it would;
    Just like the Tulgeywood)

    When I came into my land
    I did not understand:
    Neither dry rot, nor the burn pile
    Nor the bark-beetle, nor the dry well
    Nor the black bear

    But there is another
    Who is a little older
    When I broke my bone
    He carried me up from the riverside

    To spend my life
    In spitting-distance
    Of the love that I have known
    I must stay here, in an endless eventide

    And if you come and see me
    You will upset the order
    You cannot come and see me
    For I set myself apart
    But when you come and see me
    In California
    You cross the border of my heart

    Well, I have sown untidy furrows
    Across my soul
    But I am still a coward
    Content to see my garden grow
    So sweet & full
    Of someone else's flowers

    But sometimes
    I can almost feel the power
    Sometimes I am so in love with you
    (Like a little clock
    That trembles on the edge of the hour
    Only ever calling out "Cuckoo, cuckoo")

    When I called you
    You, little one
    In a bad way
    Did you love me?
    Do you spite me?
    Time will tell if I can be well
    And rise to meet you rightly
    While, moving across my land
    Brandishing themselves
    Like a burning branch
    Advance the tallow-colored
    Walleyed deer
    Quiet as gondoliers
    While I wait all night, for you
    In California
    Watching the fox pick off my goldfish
    From their sorry, golden state--
    And I am no longer
    Afraid of anything, save
    The life that, here, awaits

    I don't belong to anyone
    My heart is heavy as an oil drum
    And I don't want to be alone
    My heart is yellow as an ear of corn
    And I have torn my soul apart, from
    Pulling artlessly with fool commands

    Some nights
    I just never go to sleep at all
    And I stand
    Shaking in my doorway like a sentinel
    All alone
    Bracing like the bow upon a ship
    And fully abandoning
    Any thought of anywhere
    But home
    My home
    Sometimes I can almost feel the power
    And I do love you
    Is it only timing
    That has made it such a dark hour
    Only ever chiming out
    "Cuckoo, cuckoo"?

    My heart, I wear you down, I know
    Gotta think straight
    Keep a clean plate;
    Keep from wearing down
    If I lose my head
    Just where am I going to lay it?

    (For it has half-ruined me
    To be hanging around
    Here, among the daphne
    Blooming out of the big brown;
    I am native to it, but I'm overgrown
    I have choked my roots
    On the earth, as rich as roe
    Here
    Down in California)

  12. Growsomestrawbs

    nearly all her songs are much longer than the standard 3 minutes but when you’re really listening to them you can’t even tell

  13. dead chic

    5:05
    for personal use, please ignore, thanks.

  14. i’m a hot knife he’s a pan of butter

    I haven’t listen this in so long

  15. michelle rogers

    I will never, ever forget hearing this live in Dublin on her last tour... a completely mind-blowing experience...

  16. cassidy williams

    some nights i just never go to sleep at all...

  17. helena maria

    why is no one talking about the similarity of this song with does not suffice?

    Lauren Dale

    helena maria i think does not suffice is a reprise

    Simulacreage

    I think in certain forms of the release, the song is officially listed as "Does Not Suffice (In California, Refrain") so it's not really unknown

    Growsomestrawbs

    Simulacreage yeah i thought that too

  18. Lauren Dale

    I’m trying to listen but I can’t because I’m in such a state that the beauty of it would break me down

  19. Ungoliant Marauder

    This reminds me of the man i loved with all of my heart

  20. Hannah Max

    would love to play her vocal part on my violin. anyone have the sheet music?

  21. Non cookie cutter

    Frankey Stew and Harvey Gunn - Sometimes - brought me here

    Stefan

    Same man (: such a great tune especially thanks to these vocals

  22. imogen

    i wonder what itd be like to see through joanna's eyes

    Joe Jacovino

    listen?

  23. Samantha Rose

    this song is perfection and simlutaneously hurts and heals my soul all at once. forever grateful for joanna.

  24. Luc L'Heureux

    No one is talking about how amazing the last minute or so of this track is

    Ruby S

    i agree

  25. Sonja Benson

    "But there is another, who is a little older, and when I broke my bone he carried me up from the river side." I love that lyric so much.

    microtraffic

    the way she says "river side" gives me chills

  26. nadianoodle27

    section beginning at 1:52 makes me cry every time without fail. pure and unbelievably sweet perfection.

  27. Paul Cassidy

    I don't belong to anyone, my heart is heavy as an oil drum, and I don't want to be alone, my heart is yellow, as an ear of corn, and I have torn my soul apart, from pulling artlessly with fool commands...

    Paris Simpson

    Paul Cassidy 💜💜

    Modern Savage25

    These are better lyrics than this chick writes.

  28. Samuel Barron

    Is she singing, "my caca"? 😂😂😂

    Jake Devereux

    ha...poo

    Ungoliant Marauder

    gang weed

  29. Rachel Cardwell

    That orchestra swell before the last 'cukoo's gets me every time. My heart gives a leap at the beauty of it.

  30. Did

    Fun fact, when she sings:

    Sometimes I am so in love with you
    (like a little clock
    that trembles on the edge of the hour,
    only ever calling out "Cuckoo, cuckoo")

    She's cuckooing at the one hour mark on the album.

    Modern Savage25

    @Ankur Chawla It's a forsaken island to you, because you like this music. I'm fine with the fact that others disagree with me. I think they have poor taste in music, but as they say, there is no accounting for taste, or a lack of it.

    Modern Savage25

    @Ankur Chawla BTW, I was responding to your suggestion that I listen to "Monkey and Bear". I listened to that song three times, and it was bad three times, but I'll listen to it again.

    mdesir23

    @Modern Savage25 we can make some objective claims about subjective mediums like music (or dance, visual art etc) Schopenhauers aesthetics addresses this really well but if you google 'disinterested pleasure' some spark notes on his ideas should suffice. Newsom has been a student of music (her childhood goal was to be a composer) since she was 5. Her music borrows elements from sooo many genres! She uses polyrhythms interesting rhyme schemes and immersive lyrics I dont understand how anyone can not like it, but more importantly in not liking it it might be useful to levy constructive criticisms about the constituent parts you feel fall short. This song in particular sets up a refrain that is revisited/resolved in the albums final song. Try "leaving the city" "soft as chalk" "sapokanikan" or "baby birch" I think they're more approachable and with the exception of baby birch all display objectively unique takes on the musical styles they're derivative of....I was a bug dumb 4loko drinking lax bro when I first heard JN and it grabbed meimmediately, I understand her voice is unconventional but shes so damn talented

    MVR

    Modern Savage25 your long comment about song structures is what I call a lazy pile of convoluted garbage. It doesn’t make any goddamn sense.

    Damon Berry

    @Modern Savage25 you're reading every indicator incorrectly

  31. Gregory Fister

    I have torn my soul apart form pulling artlessly with fool commands

  32. Micah craven

    Right?! I can't wait until I can just get buried and lost in her music!

  33. Psych-O-Sonic 99

    Sounds like she's doing Tim Buckley.

  34. James North

    The best song on this album

    Dino Spumoni

    Tough, with _Baby Birch_ and _Have One on Me._

    Ann Smith

    You and Me Bess and Easy and 81

    David Nicholas

    It Does Not Suffice is the best song on the album. It's the reason for the album. It is album. But it wouldn't work without the other songs on the album, especially the songs Dino and Ash mentioned, so I give due respect to those too.

  35. S. Nero

    This is one outstanding and breathtaking composition.

    Ungoliant Marauder

    unfortunately, undisciplined hippies dont seem to aprecciate that

    Valeria Pannunzio

    @Ungoliant Marauder But I'm an undisciplined hippy and love this

  36. Kevin Forgard

    This is one of her songs I just want to study - both musically and lyrically. So beautiful. Her singing has gotten more sophisticated over the years. Anyone who thinks its child-like, needs to listen to other soprano singers. My one critique to her voice is the over-vibrato sometimes. 

    staralfur123

    Kevin Forgard I am a soprano, and my main goal in life is to sing like either Joanna Newsom or Shara Nova (from My Brightest Diamond)

  37. Micah craven

    Brilliant writing

    dead chic

    she's the greatest living lyricist

  38. Ellen W

    this is a masterpiece

  39. dead chic

    no comment.

    dead chic

    +dead chic ...

    dead chic

    i dont belong to anyone, my heart is heavy as an oil drum